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ZB 2 litre...timing belt or chain?

Discussion in 'ZB Holden Commodore (2018)' started by Stroppy, Jan 31, 2020.

  1. Stroppy

    Stroppy Active Member

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    Hi all... I have been looking at a plain Jane ZB Commodore to replace my VF Evoke wagon. The Evoke has done a shade over 55,000 k and it looks, feels and still smells new. I love the car but the engine does feel a bit underdone. The other reason to replace the VF is that our beloved elderly pooch has passed away and we really don't need such a big car anymore. Anyway...I digress. I have Googled this question and can't find a straight answer. Does the LT 2 litre motor have a timing belt or chain? I did use the forum search utility but nothing turned up.
     
  2. _R_J_K_

    _R_J_K_ Well-Known Member

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    Looking at pictures of the LTG it's a chain. Very few engines use belts now because it's difficult to use cam phasers for variable valve timing with them and they're "supposed" to be a lifetime part to keep the maintenance down.
     
  3. Stroppy

    Stroppy Active Member

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    Thanks _R_J_K_ Much appreciated. This helps with my decision.
     
  4. 87VLCALAIS

    87VLCALAIS Member

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    I'm curious as to why it makes a difference from an owners point of view whether timing belt or a timing chain is used.
     
  5. Paul Cordingley

    Paul Cordingley Member

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    Have you ever changed a timing belt? PITA. I'm very please with having a chain. :)
     
  6. 87VLCALAIS

    87VLCALAIS Member

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    Yes, I have and it wasn't that hard. VL 3 litre Calais
     
  7. _R_J_K_

    _R_J_K_ Well-Known Member

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    It's kind of an exxy service item if you're paying somebody to change it for you (although chains are only an advantage if car companies don't cheap out on them). Water pump is often behind the belt too so if that goes it's more work.

    Depends on the car, there are a lot which are terrible. The one on my old Excel was super simple, could do it in about two hours.
     
  8. Reaper

    Reaper Tells it like it is.

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    Go find something different. ZB should never have been released and unless it's free you will probably going to get reamed in depreciation. Even if it's free you still probably will be.
     
  9. vs-lover

    vs-lover Well-Known Member

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    Have you ever owned an Alloytec V6 made between 2006 and May 2008, now tell me that they never need a timing chain replaced and when the do they aren't the biggest PITA ???????
     
  10. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    VR Buicks used cheap arse chains too. PITA is an understatement on a Buick. My wallet was lightened by $2k inc parts to replace mine. VL is the go, damn easy replacement on those I am lead to believe, slice and slide is what I believe you can do on a VL. Mine VL has over 150k and was still on original belt.
     
  11. vs-lover

    vs-lover Well-Known Member

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    Yep your issues have been well documented but those engines are quite a few generations back now while the Alloytec was a relatively new design that some smart arse in Holdens put in a suggestion into the suggestion box to save a few bucks per engine and look how much that wasted end users hard earned coin.
     
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  12. Stroppy

    Stroppy Active Member

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    Someone above mentioned the "VR Buick". Hmmm...the VN to VT used the 3.8litre OHV V6. No timing belt or timing chain. They did have a serpentine drive belt for the power steering and AC pump but that's about it.
    The general rule of thumb is that timing chains should last the life of the engine. Rubber timing belts have to be changed between 60 to 120,000 kay, depending up the manufacturer's recommendation. It's not an easy job and you often have to change the belt, water pump and, often, the tensioners. I owned a TJ Magna and that ate timing belts every 100,000 kay. It was an expensive job to change and if you had a d'head mechanic who didn't tension the belt properly you were in for a pile of trouble.

    As to the VE timing chain issue...well, I can't talk about the chain quality. I do know someone who replaced the GM chain with a "better quality" aftermarket chain and they are now very happy. I own a VF and, apparently, the "chain stretch" issue was solved by then. I have a great mechanic, ex GM, and he has told me that the secret to keeping the chain healthy in a VE or VF is to make sure you are scrupulous about your oil changes and that you always use the recommended oil viscosity and a top brand synthetic oil.
     
  13. Lex

    Lex Well-Known Member

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    Both engines do use a timing chain.
     
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  14. VS 5.0

    VS 5.0 Well-Known Member

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    VN - VP used the Buick engine, VS - VY used Ecotech.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020 at 6:58 PM
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  15. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Yep and Holden should have learnt from the past. But like most manufacturers who bosses come from the US they are always looking to cheapen the build. They look at the immediate and don't care about the rep that using cheap parts will have on the brand. And lets face it, it's penny pinching at its finest. Like some US built vehicles that think oh lets save 5 bucks and use cheap diff bearings on our 4WD's. Manufacture 10 million vehicles and that's a great saving, too bad about the rep......
     
  16. greenacc

    greenacc Searching for the billion

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    You want to sell a VF and buy a ZB just because the VF is a tiny bit bigger? Wow, be prepared to throw away a lot of money.
     
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  17. Stroppy

    Stroppy Active Member

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    Wow! Friendly much?
    1. The ZB is more powerful (2 litre compared to the 3 litre in the VF) with better torque.
    2. It is more economical that the VF.
    3. You can pick up an "RS" model with all the safety goodies, balance of new car warranty, better audio / nav /android connectivity with with less than ten kay on the odo for around 25-29 grand whereas the new list price is around the forty mark, from memory. Yes...heaps of depreciation but then a lot of cars depreciate terribly over the first couple of years anyway. I'm an old fart so this would likely be my last car ever. So you wanna hit me again with the sarcasm?
     
  18. Stroppy

    Stroppy Active Member

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    All the cars using the Buick-derived 3.8 V6 were pushrod OHV.
    This quote from the website "Unique Cars and Parts"...

    "...The route eventually taken, however, was to locally assemble the 3.8-litre V6 used by Buick, Oldsmobile and Cadillac. The American V6 had evolved from a 1962 design but was being completely redesigned by the Americans for a 1988 relaunch. Although still slightly primitive in mechanical specification, this pushrod donk performed well and had bags of torque. In the US it was only being built for front-wheel drive and for use with an automatic, so the GM-H engineers had to turn the east-west engine north-south and adapt it for the two transmissions planned for local use: the M78 5-speed and the MD8 Turbohydramatic slushbox..."
     
  19. losh1971

    losh1971 Well-Known Member

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    Yep pushrods and timing chain, Holden done away with cam gears many years earlier.
     
  20. Stroppy

    Stroppy Active Member

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    The 3.8 Buick-derived engines were all pushrod. The VY release saw the use of the first OHC since the VL Nissan motor.
     

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